Why the Clippers Must Draft Al-Farouq Aminu (And Why They Shouldn't)

The draft is finally here. I’ve looked at two possible candidates to hear their names called when David Stern announces the Clippers’ selection in tonight’s draft and will now reveal the reasons I hope the team drafts Al-Farouq Aminu in tonight’s draft.

Aminu is largely thought of as a combo forward – someone who’s athletic enough to play the three and tough enough to battle against some of the smaller fours in the Western Conference. The Clippers currently have a hole at the three position and have rookie Blake Griffin at the four, so there’s a place for Aminu to step in and contribute right away on the Clippers.

So why should the Clippers use the 8th pick to draft Aminu?
Aminu is an excellent athlete and will be able to run the floor in any up-tempo offense that the Clippers run (and they should do everything they can to take advantage of their athleticism). He rebounds well and will be able to use his reported 7’4″ wingspan to grab rebounds over smaller threes he’ll be matched up against, a mismatch that will pay huge dividends when he’s on the floor with Chris Kaman (or DeAndre Jordan) and Griffin.

Why would the Clippers want to pass on Aminu?
For all his many strengths, Aminu has some weaknesses that may cause him to be a bad fit in the Clippers’ offense. While he does have a nice mid-range shot, he lacks the ability to hit a three-pointer with any frequency. He wouldn’t be a viable option on a drive-and-kick situation that Baron Davis loves. He is a little small to play in the post and didn’t show an ability to create his own offense in the post or off the dribble in his two seasons at Wake Forest.

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